If you want to lose weight by doing a form of exercise that’s easy on your joints, an exercise bike is a safe bet.
In fact, many people who are mobility-challenged, in recovery after an injury or post-pregnancy find that it’s easier to use an exercise bike compared to any other fitness machine or free-weight training. From that perspective, exercise bikes are better than nothing.
But are exercise bikes good for weight loss? Read the article below to find out the answer to this question and also how you can lose weight faster on your indoor bicycle.
Get The Right Type Of Bike
You’ll have to choose between a regular exercise bike and a recumbent one depending on your needs. Regular exercise bikes are more challenging because they engage your lower body and core muscles more. However, if you have certain issues that affect your mobility or put you in pain, recumbent bikes may be more appropriate.
Before making your choice, it’s important to speak to your doctor and physical therapist. Your specialist can also recommend or restrict certain types of movements.
That said, upright exercise bikes help with weight loss more than recumbent bikes because they burn twice more calories at the same intensity level.
Some sources indicate that you can get up to 600 calories/ hour with an upright stationary bike if you’re 185 pounds. Conversely, you can only burn 300 calories/ hour for that weight and at a similar intensity level on a recumbent bike.
But apart from burning calories, indoor cycling also burns fat. Studies show that, combined with a low-calorie diet, using an exercise bike changes your body composition to the best. Besides, this strategy also lowers your bad cholesterol levels and increases your good cholesterol levels as opposed to the no-diet strategy.
Do Interval Training
Interval training is shown to increase your metabolism while excessive cardio can burn through your muscle mass and lead to a decreased metabolic rate.
Therefore, you should alternate between intense intervals and moderate-intensity intervals to avoid weight loss plateaus.
Get In Your Fat-Burning Zone
Choose a quality stationary bike with an accurate blood pressure monitor. This monitor will show you if you’re in the fat-burning zone so that you can lose more fat instead of muscle or water weight.
If you want to get a personalised fat-burning interval, it’s best to address your doctor. Otherwise, the generic formula is 55% * (220-your age) to 80% * (220-your age).
So, for a 50-year-old person, the fat burning interval is between 93.5 and 136 bpm.
Get Enough Rest
Many beginners exhaust themselves for hours on their exercise bikes every day so that they can lose weight faster. You might also be tempted to do that.
However, remember that your muscles need time to recover. Sore muscles and increased levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) prevent weight loss.
Besides, exhausting yourself leads to a decreased motivation to work out in the long-term. So even if you’re shedding massive weight during the first few weeks, you’re less likely to keep up the good work for longer.
Try Strength Training
Talk to your doctor about incorporating strength training into your routine. A physical trainer can devise a personalised workout routine by taking into account your medical history, potential mobility problems, and your fitness level. As such, you can learn new strategies to strength train apart from the regular he-man weight hefting until exhaustion.
For instance, you can even do upper bodyweight training without weights (and without push-ups *wink*) by working against your own strength. These movements are similar to variable strength training, but you’re using your own body weight instead of resistance bands.
Speaking of which, you shouldn’t neglect your upper body and core. If you’re interested in your body composition and body shape, not just losing weight, you should train your entire body.
Besides, strength training increases your muscle mass. The result is you’ll burn more calories even when you’re resting. With a faster resting metabolic rate, you can burn more fat and shed more pounds than with just regular cycling.
In Conclusion. Can you lose weight on an exercise bike?
Yes, you can lose weight on an exercise bike. Although indoor cycling doesn’t burn as many calories as other cardio exercises, you can still lose a decent amount of weight at a steady pace if you keep up.
We also presented you with a few different strategies to lose more weight. Remember that it’s important to stay motivated! Also, remember that everyone is different and that fitness looks different on everyone.
Factors like age, sex, health issues, current body composition, and current weight influence how fast you’ll lose weight on your exercise bike.
However, if you follow our advice and choose the right stationary bike for challenging workouts, you’ll become a slimmer you in no-time.